Watching Dave

No, I’m not stalking someone called Dave, because Dave in this instance is a TV channel in the UK, which mainly shows old programmes first aired by other stations, usually the BBC. It is a kind of channel that I mindlessly and brainlessly tune to, when I have nothing else to do and there is nothing that I want to do. Anyway, it regularly broadcasts old current affairs programmes such as Have I Got News for You or Mock the Week. I find it fascinating to watch the old episodes, for example when Tony Blair was the prime minister of the country, since I often find myself not getting the joke, as I have forgotten what were and must have been big issues of the day.

It is a stark reminder that some things that seemed particularly important at the time had no long-term effects, and there were issues that had been missed or that were not apparent then. What would future historians make of our times, if the only thing survived were the schedules of Dave?